“Caught in a never-ending game, seems like the world’s still trying to tame me, if that’s the way, I will obey, beautifully struggle every day,” this song from the movie ‘Your Name’ cheers me up every time I listen to it.
The movie itself is an incredible experience. Directed by Makoto Shinkai, it became the highest-grossing animated movie and Japanese film during the time of its release. The film was also honored with the 2016 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards and the 71st Mainichi Film Awards for Best Animated Feature Film.
The movie was my introduction to the anime world. The popularity of the film is owed to its unique storyline and music which touched many people all across the world.
Excitement For His New Film
It should come as no surprise that people were eager to see director Makoto Shinkai’s new romantic-fantasy film ‘Weathering With You’ as fans enjoyed his previous film so much.
But foreign movies that are not in the English language don’t find many screens and theatres in India.
To remedy this us Indian fans started a petition to make the movie release happen in India.
Why Is This Movie Important?
The movie has great world-building and visuals that were praised by many critics. Furthermore, the film’s tone and message of living for yourself is one that resonates well with this generation.
The film has collected almost 6 billion yen (over USD 55 million), making it the highest-grossing Japanese anime film and it is Japan’s official entry for the next year’s Oscars, making it the first anime film to be submitted by Japan in over 20 years.
This film would be the first mature anime movie to be screened in India and may open the gates for more foreign and anime films that are not a Hollywood creation, in the country.
Indian Anime Movement
This petition that gained over 56,000 signatures with the hashtag #indiawantsanime caught the eyes of distributors and the director, which has made the release of the movie possible in India.
Indian fans flooded the internet demanding they be allowed to experience the movie via legitimate channels of cinema halls and not through torrents.
Awareness Through T-shirts and Posters
The leader of the movement Mr. Shubham Agrawal feels that Indian anime fans often go unnoticed by the animation companies and hence he started the campaign so that fans aren’t forced to opt for piracy and unsolicited sites just to have the pleasure of seeing the movie.
His team distributed T-shirts and posters in Delhi to gain momentum and bring attention to the anime scene in India.
Director Shinkai’s Response
The efforts were acknowledged by Mr. Shinkai who tweeted that he’ll talk to the Japanese distributors.
He said, “Ever since the petition, I have been receiving a lot of messages from Indian fans who are eager to watch the film in movie theatres. I have been overwhelmed by their pureness and passion. Now, I feel I can carry out the promise. I am very much looking forward to the film being well received by fans who live in the country of movie and mythology.”
Effect on Theatres
Our cries were finally heard by theatre chains and the film will be released in India on October 11, across 20 cities including Mumbai and Delhi. The Indian distribution rights have been licensed to PVR pictures and BookMyShow backed Vkaao.
To make the movie accessible to more people the fans are trying to rope in INOX, another popular cinema chain in India. INOX has responded that the request of the fans has been noted.
Premiere At The Japanese Film Festival
The movie premiered in India on 27 September at the 2019 Japanese Film Festival, hosted by the Japan Foundation in New Delhi which was also attended by Makoto Shinkai. The film was screened at PVR Select CITYWALK, New Delhi.
I think if the movie performs well then the number of screens will increase as would India’s interest in anime.
So, if the movie is going to be screened in your city do give it a chance, maybe you’ll discover your love for a new genre. I know I’ll drag my sister to the theatres if it is released in my city.
I am excited about this news, are you?
Image Credits: Google Images
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